4 gigs of fail

As noted in an earlier post, WoW recently released the pre-expansion patches for Cataclysm, and they weigh in at a healthy 4 gigs. Let’s think about this for a second. One of WoW’s stellar selling points is the fact that pretty much any machine can run it, and over any connection from 56k on up. So how in the world does it make sense to release something like these patches?

Marko, for instance, had some issues getting the patch. A slow line is a curse, but even worse is the cost in some places. We’re not all in Sweden or the US, and where I live, bandwidth is *expensive*. It costs about the same for 4 gigs of bandwidth as it did to buy my original WoW/Crusade bundle. Eventually a local hosting company put it on a local FTP and I downloaded the patches using (much cheaper) local bandwidth, but a lot of players in my country sort of looked at the size of this monstrosity and decided that there was no chance in hell.

Many players of WoW aren’t adults or technically inclined, remember, and just browsing to the forums is beyond some. Explaining how to get to a local FTP, buy another account with only local bandwidth, download and install the patches is a bit far fetched.

That’s not even mentioning how buggy the patch was when it hit. I couldn’t enter instances, others couldn’t do battlegrounds, there were issues relating to -mousing over- objects, random crashes, and the list goes on. Class imbalance was unbelievable. Most of these issues were reported on the PTR, but remained unaddressed when it went live. The QQ was incredible to behold – and, I believe, fully justified.

So yeah, it’s been a few weeks already, but I’m still wondering why Blizzard went put their foot so deep in this one.

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